Constantine: City of Demons review by Bobby Blakey
Over the years the dark side of the occult of DC Comics has been sneaking its way into the live action world with the character of Constantine. When Matt Ryan took on the role for the tragically short lived live action series of the same name fans fell in love. Despite the series being canceled he has made numerous appearances in shows like Arrow, Legends of Tomorrow and the previous animated feature Justice League Dark. Now he is returning once again to voice the role with the all-new animated feature Constantine: City of Demons co-starring Damian O’Hare, Laura Bailey, Emily O’Brien, Kevin Michael Richardson, and Jim Meskimen.
Constantine: City of Demons follows a decade after a tragic mistake, where a family man Chas and occult detective John Constantine set out to cure Chas’s daughter Trish from a mysterious supernatural coma. With the help of the mysterious Nightmare Nurse, the influential Queen of Angels, and brutal Aztec God Mictlantecuhtli, the pair just might have a chance at outsmarting the demon Beroul to save Trish’s soul. In a world of shadows and dark magic, not everything is what it seems, and there’s always a price to pay. The path to redemption is never easy, and if Constantine is to succeed, he must navigate through the dark urban underbelly of Los Angeles, outwit the most cunning spawns of hell, and come face to face with arch-nemesis Nergal – all while battling his own inner demons!
Much like the previously released films of Vixen and The Ray this animated feature is a compilation of an animated CW Seed series, but this one takes it to another level. It has fully embraced its R rating offering up lots of blood and even a sex sequence which some might feel it wasn’t necessary, but does make the threats involved all the more real. I love that Matt Ryan has fully embraced every aspect of this character since his sadly short lived run in the live action series. Despite this here it is actually more in the universe of Justice League Dark animated feature taking the character into a more personal direction while still offering up the expected fun and dark magic of his universe.
I was surprised that they didn’t inject any other big DC characters into this film to drive the story like they usually do, but it makes it so much better allowing for Constantine to showcase his ability to stand on his own. The story here works well offering up everything you want in a story in the dark magical side of the DC Universe. There is a ton of blood filled action and no shying away from the blood and horror elements to remind the viewer that this is not the mainstream superhero tale. This might be the closest thing we will get in terms of adult level storytelling for this character in this format and I am hoping that it will do well enough to bring him back for more blood soaked tales of Constantine bringing down the dark forces of hell sooner than later.
This new release not only includes the film but also bonus content including featurettes that take you behind bringing this dark world of the occult to life. Join in the fight against evil when Constantine: City of Demons hits Digital HD, 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD on October 9th from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.